In the world of online marketing, you often must have come across an overly emphasized term “user engagement” (and quite rightly). You must also have heard about its monumental role in controlling the direction of your overall sales funnel. And if you’ve researched enough; how using video animation and other video types is a modern tactic to boost it.
But we kid you not! Although it stands out from writing and other types of videos in terms of engagement, animation in its very nature is a highly competitive medium, and will therefore put every bit of your creativity to test.
This is due to its prevalent use among modern businesses for its effectiveness in driving leads and conversions.
So if you’re already determined to make video animations as your primary tool of marketing or aren’t satisfied with the current results, this article will help you a lot. Here, we will be discussing the very definition of engagement, its importance, the dos and don’ts that will impact it in positive and negative ways, along with some tips and tricks that will take it to the next level.
So buckle up! There’s plenty to absorb…
What is user engagement?
The word user engagement doesn’t have a universal definition, as its meaning and defining metrics can differ from business to business. However, if we constrict our circle purely to online marketing, it means “the value users find your product or service”.
That said, you can easily measure your engagement level by calculating the total number of downloads, shares, clicks, or conversions generated through your website or video content, depending on the nature of your industry.
In general, if your business is generating high profits and leads, this means you have high user engagement, and people find value in how you present your services or products. According to Involve.me, you can use the following general metrics to calculate your engagement:
- Pages per session
- Time on page/site/video
- Bounce rate
- Scroll depth
Why is user engagement important?
Customer engagement tells you if your marketing strategies are working well, or if working at all! According to research conducted by Gallop, companies with better user engagement have 23% more chances of converting, and retaining consumers for a long time.
Moreover, as it develops an emotional connection between the customers and the brand; you get useful insights on how you can make your services better through honest feedback.
So the better the interaction and engagement, the more are your chances of getting an edge over your competitors.
Remember, no matter how awesome a product or service you bring to the market is, if you can’t bring people to buy and keep using it, it’s pointless. And that’s why, user engagement is not just important, but crucial for running a successful business.
How does Animation help in user engagement?
Video animation, these days, is perhaps the most trendy and effective type of video marketing. It’s interesting, it’s short, and if done rightly, can do magic in elevating user engagement. Not sure how? Well, the following points will give you a better idea:
1. It’s fun
This might come as a surprise but according to research, the average engagement span of humans has shrunk from 12 seconds to 8 seconds since the early 2000s; that’s less than a goldfish. Yes, you heard right, a goldfish!
To coop with this issue, animations provide you the ability to pass on your company’s narrative in the form of an interesting story.
This intrigues the audience to watch the content to the end in an enjoyable way. Which in turn develops a better understanding of your product or service, and what you stand for as a company. The result? More conversions.
2. It’s easy to understand
Due to its high flexibility and the ability to break down complex topics in the form of a simple story, animation provides a better insight as far as your services and products are concerned and helps in persuading them on how you stand out from the rest.
3. Provides personalized experience
Unlike live-action videos, animated videos can be easily updated. You can make changes anytime the company decides to make updates in their policies, services, or introduce new products.
Moreover, you can also alter them for a more personalized experience towards a targeted audience.
4. It develops an emotional connection
The important prospect of a successful business is not customer conversion, but customer retention. And that is only achievable if your audience connects with you emotionally. A relatable animated story ensures that.
You can watch John Lewis ads as an example. It’s their effective storytelling and animation that people have connected their brand and products to Christmas. The result? It’s one of the leading department store companies in the world.
Different types of animations that can be used to improve user engagement
According to recent statistics, 65% of visitors prefer to watch the video before pursuing a service or product. Moreover, having video animation in marketing campaigns has proven to increase the clickthrough rate by 200%. And as per research, the following were the most frequently used animation types that generated the aforementioned results:
1. 2D animation
2D animation is one of the most old-school, but still effective types of animation that companies frequently use in their advertising campaigns. It basically consists of an array of characters that act out on a script that fully reflects a company’s narrative. However, an effective story is necessary to touch the audience emotionally.
2. 3D animation
Although its purported strategy is the same as 2D animation, it presents the characters and objects in a 3-dimensional video. Due to its interesting and relatively realistic experience, the modern audience prefers it. 3D animation takes longer to produce than other types of animation due its complexities. In terms of pricing, 3D animation companies rates are significantly higher as compared to 2D animation companies.
3. Whiteboard animation
For businesses that cover relatively complex products and services, whiteboard animation is very useful. It breaks down various aspects of the service and products in concise steps with a set of interesting images and writing, with an effective voice-over explaining it.
Although mainly educational, an effective script makes it ideal for increasing user engagement.
4. Motion graphics
Motion graphics is a mix of 3D, 2D, and other special effects, accompanied by text and voice-over, focusing on a central point; e.g the product or the service. It’s one of the most modern and trendy types of animations. Due to the various elements jumbled in one video, it is equally educational, entertaining, and interesting to intrigue and persuade visitors to buy your product.
Where to Showcase your video animation for effective user engagement:
Once you are done with creating an excellent video animation, the next and most important step is to present it to the audience. However, due to less knowledge or wrong strategy, many businesses fail to promote it the right way, making the whole thing pointless.
To make sure you don’t do the same, here are some effective platforms where you can showcase your animated videos to drive maximum leads and conversions:
According to stats released by fortunelords.com, around 5 billion videos are played on Youtube per day. Keeping that into account, there are more chances of exposure for your video animation.
2. Your company’s website
Around 40-50% of visitors leave the website without conversion because they don’t find your content or product presentation interesting enough. You can minimize this by showcasing a video on the landing page of your website. This will increase engagement and understanding, eventually leading to high conversions.
3. Social media
More than 4 billion videos are played on Facebook every day, with over 2.6 billion active users worldwide. This means Facebook can be a great source to increase your leads and conversions and overall user engagement.
Remember when we talked about how animations can give a personalized experience to your targeted audience? Well, you can take advantage of it by emailing them helpful video animations that primarily highlight their needs and how you have the solution. This gives your prospective customers a sense of care and importance.
Perhaps the most primitive source of increasing user engagement, but if ads are executed properly, it can do wonders for your business by driving traffic from Youtube and Facebook directly to your website.
To-dos of creating a video animation for user engagement:
Here’s what you need to note to create a highly engaging video:
- Always start by understanding the needs and interests of your targeted audience. The age, lifestyle, gender, and interests of the audience play a huge role in scriptwriting.
- Customize the video in a way that your target audience can relate to it. Your visuals and story play a huge role in it.
- Use aesthetic and dynamic visuals that can keep the audience intrigued throughout the play minutes.
- Hire skilled narrators or voice actors for your videos. Although this doesn’t seem like a huge factor, it plays a significant role in keeping the audience gripped.
- Never ever compromise on the production quality. Remember, the video you present is the face of your brand.
- Integrate the brand message carefully, so that it doesn’t sound salesy, but rather friendly. The creative skill of your production company plays a huge role in it.
Animated content is the current norm of video marketing, and its importance only seems to be increasing due to the drastic shift of audience preference from writing to visuals. Due to its persuasive nature and ability to blend a number of factors in one, simple visual experience, it is constantly replacing conventional copywriting for conclusive brand and product representation and elevating profits.
If you found this piece helpful in increasing your awareness of the importance of animation and how it affects user engagement, feel free to express your thoughts in the comments box. We would love to hear about the tips you are going to apply in your new marketing campaign. Cheers!